Saturday, November 10, 2018

Minutia Men, Episode 115

EP115: Rick and Dave discuss Jenkins drinking on the job, ageism, expensing stripper bills, Rick’s brush with race car driver Dick Trickle, and they interview the voice of Siri. Seriously. The voice of Siri.

Listen to it here.

Friday, November 09, 2018

Cameo Review

Marssie Mancotti from Windy City Reviews posted this review of "Cameo" by Beth Jacobellis (Eckhartz Press, pick up your copy here)

Just out of college and not knowing what comes next, Samantha Ricks visits a psychic, Ingrid, in hopes of obtaining a little guidance regarding the uncertain world ahead. The message is a little confusing at first, but a tragic incident from the past seems to be affecting Samantha’s present. All the signs point to a happy future, but there are adventures ahead for Samantha before she can realize her potential.

Cameo, by Beth Jacobellis, is an interweaving of the past, its impact on the present, and how our feelings can get in the way of understanding what is pulling us through to the future. The book begins in the present, but we are quickly transported to the cameo’s present life in 1994 and then again through vignettes from 1885, 1976 and 1989.

Every chapter of Cameo begins with a detailed, grey-tone cameo repeated from the cover art, letting the reader know that the energy of this talisman is what will drive it through to conclusion. This is a nice round visual and thematic device that is particularly satisfying. It also begins the story by engaging us in Samantha’s life right away. The psychic elements are treated in a humorous and sensible way. For instance, Samantha is not intrigued by the decrepit and dusty home of pink-sequined Ingrid, the psychic. She remains skeptical until she gets a straight answer to her question about marriage and children. She’s going to get her money’s worth despite any possibly misleading clues. She remains levelheaded even when experiencing the vision of her departed brother and is actually comforted by seeing him looking at her from behind a tree.

As a contemporary woman, Samantha is not afraid of competing in a former “man’s world” of radio sales. Through an introduction, she presents herself to the general sales manager of the station as a job candidate. She’s quickly hired and thrown into the sales pit, but she’s a smart woman and lets the childish banter and silly advances of her colleagues roll off her back. Jacobellis keeps the story rooted in reality with the ride shares, fancy awards parties, and business lunches that are such a part of the radio scene. We see Samantha’s hard work pay off in a good sales list and a rosy financial future.

We admire her strength, but there are things stronger than Samantha, like the resolution of past wrongs. Samantha ponders her personal past, trying to make sense of the guilt she feels over her brother’s passing. The “cameo” was a gift her brother had chosen for her, and it seems to be her personal talisman as she stumbles through her young life. Ghosts from the distant past also make cameo appearances.

Samantha keeps reaching back for answers, but there are parts of the cameo’s history that she will not know but can only experience. She’s not aware of just how far back the trail unwinds, but, where love is unresolved, Jacobellis allows no statute of limitations. All wrongs must be put right.

Cameo is a charming story to read. It is not a long book, but this type of love story, with layers of the past all playing out at the same time, draws us into Samantha’s quest and carries us through a briskly-paced read. I enjoyed this book for its clear storytelling and mysterious overtones. I also found it refreshing that the past is not always looking to punish but merely to resolve. Although tragic events do occur in this novella that may have their own story to tell, all Jacobellis is telling us is Samantha’s story and why some of the things that are happening to her seem to be terrible but are ultimately leading her to a future that has the promise of happiness.

Javy Wins Silver Slugger Award

Got this in my e-mail box this morning from the Cubs. Congrats to Javy!

Chicago Cubs second baseman Javier Báez tonight won his first-career National League Silver Slugger Award. Báez is one of only two second basemen in franchise history to win this award, joining seven-time winner Ryne Sandberg (1984-85, 1988-92).

In 2018, Báez batted .290 (176-for-606) with 101 runs scored, 40 doubles, nine triples, 34 home runs and an NL-leading 111 RBI, setting career highs in all six categories. He also turned in a .326 on-base percentage, a .554 slugging percentage and an .881 OPS, all career bests as well. Báez became the first player in major league history to reach 40 doubles, nine triples, 34 homers, 111 RBI and 21 stolen bases within a single season.

WLS Speculation

Robert Feder speculates in his column today about the potential new lineup of WLS Radio...

We’ll soon be hearing more of Ben Shapiro on WLS 890-AM, according to insiders. The editor-in-chief of and conservative commentator, whose hourlong podcast now airs at 9 p.m. weekdays, is expected to host a syndicated afternoon show on the Cumulus Media news/talk station. Starting early in the new year, sources said, he’ll replace afternoon star Steve Dahl, whose last show on WLS airs December 21. Confirmation of the deal could come Monday when Shapiro originates his podcast from WLS studios in Chicago. There’s also word that Erich Mancow Muller may be in line to host mornings on WLS, shifting Big John Howell to another role at the station. Muller, who paired with Pat Cassidy in middays on WLS from 2008 to 2010, most recently hosted mornings on the former WLUP (aka The Loop) before it was sold in March. Marv Nyren, vice president and market manager of Cumulus Chicago, declined to comment on any personnel moves.

Another New Author

Another satisfied author with the first copy of his book “Death of the Angels” about one of the most tragic events in Chicago history, the fire at Our Lady of the Angels school. The 60th anniversary of the fire is December 1. The book is available for pre order now. Congrats to Alex Burkholder.

Thursday, November 08, 2018

Jim Acosta

The White House revoked the press credentials of CNN's Jim Acosta yesterday because they felt he was too rude when he quetioned the president.

Yes, this president. The rudest man in America was upset by someone he considered rude.

Every president has had to deal with someone like Acosta. Think Sam Donaldson. Think Helen Thomas. Think Dan Rather. Every president before this has been adult enough to handle it.

Time to put on your big boy pants, Mr. President.

UPDATE: It appears the video the White House released to "show" that Jim Acosta assaulted the intern was a right wing group tied to InfoWars. That's right, they released a doctored tape. The White house. Pathetic.

Wednesday, November 07, 2018

Christmas Music Starts Tomorrow

It may not quite yet be lovely weather for a sleigh ride together with you...but Lite FM begins their all-Christmas Music format tomorrow (Thursday).

Robert Feder has the details.

Criminals and Dead People

Big election night. I was at a meeting last night, so I couldn't watch the coverage. Sounds like that's a good thing (for me).

Just looking over the results this morning, and here's my favorite part. How indiscriminate are Republican voters? They voted for two people who are currently indicted (Collins in New York and Hunter in California), and one who is dead. That's right, in Nevada they voted for the Bunny Ranch owner Dennis Hof--who died several weeks ago.

Also, white nationalist Steve King won, and an actual Nazi in Illinois (running as a Republican) got 53,000 votes.

Tuesday, November 06, 2018

Make America Evil Again


Three Stanley Cups not enough to save Coach Q...


It's time to take the "News" title away from Fox News once and for all.

Chet in Westmont

Had a great time at the Polish-American Alliance luncheon yesterday with Chet Coppock. What a great bunch of folks, and what a delicious lunch (dumplings and schnitzel, mmmm). Thanks to everyone who had us out, and we hope you all enjoy Chet's latest book!

Monday, November 05, 2018

My favorite play of Bears game

It's so fun to watch the Bears again. I can't believe how much I missed it...

Don Evans on WGN Radio

Eckhartz Press author Don Evans was a guest on Rick Kogan's show last night on WGN radio. For those of you who heard it, or those of you who didn't, here's a little more info about that book...

Gold Glover

Well deserved. Can't believe that Javy didn't win one, but Anthony sure deserves this...

Pick a Side

To quote Florida governor candidate Andrew Gillum..."I'm not saying he's a racist. I'm just saying that the racists sure think he is one of them."

When David Duke, the Grand Wizard of the KKK, is on your side, there's a very good chance you are on the wrong side.

Cold Open

Last SNL before the election...

Minutia Men, Episode 114

Dave and I bonded with Mark Cuban about our mutual hobby...embarrassing our kids. Fun interview with the Shark Tank star is part of this weeks episode.

Listen to it here.

103 Stories

These two made the climb all the way up the Willis Tower stairs yesterday to support a worthy charity. I think Sean beat Bridget by about 15 minutes, but he's 16, and she's slightly older than that. Proud of them both.